We live in a society that has the unhealthy tendency of putting people on a pedestal. People give up whatever common sense they have and blindly buy whatever product or message a celebrity is trying to sell to them. This is no exception when it comes to politics. For some reason I should listen to and care about what Hollywood actors, race car drivers and even plumbers turned political analysts are saying about a particular candidate or issue. We forget that actors are paid because of their ability to pretend to be something they are not and give credence to the person be believe they are.
What should I care about what Matt Damon thinks about fracking or the Iraq war? Why should I listen to Samuel L. Jackson’s profane rant about how we need to “wake up” and vote for Obama. Why is Clint Eastwood’s assessment of Obama’s performance any better than any other informed citizen that gets him a prime spot at the RNC? Why are Janeane Garofalo’s crazy rants about the Tea Party relevant? These people are hired for the sole purpose of reaching you and I with the message their employers want to deliver. When we allow them to be more than entertainers that we begin to think they are the characters they portrait in their movies, then we become fertile ground to believe the lies they are paid to tell us. People are more willing to believe a corrupt politician with a history of made up science than read from all sides of an issue and arrive at an informed decision.
But perhaps the ultimate sign of the times, of people completely abandoning common sense to pursue a celebrity’s lies, happened almost four years ago. For the ultimate celebrity, the one that was groomed from the beginning to become the epitome of all fabricated, well-marketed personas, is unfortunately our current president. Barack Obama, despite being unknown to almost everyone, and lacking experience of any kind, private or public sector, was able to achieve perhaps the highest position on earth because the American public wanted to elect a celebrity, not a president.